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Faster routes, later service: Kansas City wants more from city bus service

KC Bus Routes.jpg
Posted at 9:20 PM, Jun 26, 2019
and last updated 2019-06-27 00:02:37-04

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — The Kansas City Area Transportation Authority is asking for your input for RideKC Next.

It’s a major review and redesign of public transit in the city — and people 41 Action News talked to were happy to weigh in.

Long commute times were a chief complaint.

"My commute starts at 6:32 in the morning and I have to be to work at 8:00," Violet Webb said.

Riders also want buses to operate later hours.

"The buses stop running at 7 o'clock and you've got to hurry up and make sure you don't miss the bus," Linda Hammond said. "It's crazy."

Other common issues included a call for more routes up north and down south as well as increased routes that run east to west.

Kansas City mayor-elect Quinton Lucas made city bus service a focal point during his campaign.

“I believe that the bus should actually be free in Kansas City." he said. "If we have a free streetcar, we have all these free investments, we really need to make sure that people who need to get to work can."

Councilwoman Heather Hall, who represents District 1 in the Northland, agrees.

“I’ve always been for free transit for all," she tweeted. "If it’s good for the streetcar, it should be good for the bus!”

The free aspect of the KC Streetcar is popular with bus riders.

"I do like the streetcar because it's free," Webb said. "I'm going to be honest, it's free."

Lucas, in addition to the KCATA, are encouraging people to weigh in about the future of transportation in KC.

“We need to hear from you," Lucas said. "If we don’t hear from the people who are saying, 'No, I need to catch the bus,' if we aren’t hearing from people that are saying, 'I live in this neighborhood that isn’t connected that well to the bus system can you make it better?' Then, sometimes we don’t know about it.”